Prayers for the Pragmatic, Endless Winter, and Axioms of the Streetwise

drug-our-kids2

I have a few new words of wisdom for my adult son (the Precious Only Male Child.)  I thought they were so good, I just had to share.

The path to perdition is paved by the prick.  So stop thinking with yours and start using the big head up top.

Good places to meet intelligent women:  Church. The Library. The “Y.”

Bad places to meet women: Bars that play country music. Any establishment where the center of attraction is a vertical pole, and patrons are encouraged to deposit dollar bills in G-strings.  Any establishment that plays The Village People, the clientele is all male, and they’re all wearing leather.

Steve-o knows better than to join the sausage fest, and I don’t see him as the featured dance partner at the Blue Oyster, so he doesn’t really need a warning about the guys in the tight leather pants and stiletto heels.  He does need a warning regarding avoiding women of loose morals and open legs as it were.  It’s lovely that your girlfriend (or tonight’s bed partner) is willing to show you a good time.  It’s not so lovely that she’s probably been providing the same services for every other male under the age of 25- in a three county area.

Digital image

If this van’s a rockin’, someone’s sharing an STD or two…

I still remember the movie we got to see in health class back in 1982.  It was called “VD is Nothing to Clap About.” It was narrated by of all people- Dick Cavett.  It included some most unforgettable cartoons of cartoon hippies giving some cartoon VW Transporter suspensions a real workout.  It was the summer of love indeed- or at least the film offered the imagination some gratuitous behind-the-Transporter-door cartoon sex.  Even though this film was mandatory in health class, it was blow-snot-out-your  nose hilarious.  I still remember the cautions given about sleeping around and getting the clap, or syphilis, or crabs.  I’d really, really like to know if anyone has uploaded a copy of that film. I would love, love, love to have the link to it should anyone have thought to preserve such a meaningful piece of 1960’s ephemera.

Apparently the clap, syphilis and crabs were the only STDs that were known to science in 1968, which is when that most comprehensive educational film was produced.  Today’s STDs are a lot more deadly and usually a lot more permanent than just a case of the crabs or even a dose of the clap, but hey, it was 1968- when the air was dirty but sex was (relatively) clean.   Today’s dating scene provides a wide and varied STD smorgasbord.  Your stripper ho was great for a night, but herpes is forever.

rooster

Even Dad had to weigh in on Steve-o’s last skank du jour.  I was surprised to get such a pithy insight from Dad, as he is usually very conservative when discussing potentially off-color subject material, but he is becoming a bit more brash in his older age.  He speaks the truth though:

You know what a skank and a rooster have in common?

A rooster says “cock-a-doodle-doo.”  The common street skank says, “Any cock will do.”

Ewww.

snow

I don’t think this winter will ever end.

I think we finally have started a path toward the Central Ohio season of Snowbooger Grey.  At least on my car.

I can’t recall a winter here that seems to linger on so long, or that has been quite as cold..  The snow started in November and hasn’t really gone away for more than a few days or so since.  That’s unusual for this area.  It’s usually just overcast, moderately cold (but not below freezing) and raining this time of year, until about the end of May.

Al Gore can bite me sideways with the man-made global warming tripe.  The weather cycle has turned back to “mostly cold.”  In 20 years it will turn back to “mostly hot.”  Whoop de doo.  We humans are pretty damned arrogant- and just plain silly- if we think a little bit of car exhaust and a few cow farts are going to turn the tundra into a tropical paradise.

Dear Lord, keep Your arm around my shoulder and Your hand over my mouth.

While You’re at it, take away Obama’s phone and pen and put him in a rubber room for the duration.

prayer

All joking aside- sometimes that’s all that keeps me from strangling the daylights out of those who richly deserve it.

I know I shouldn’t be such a wisenheimer on Ash Wednesday, when I’m supposed to be contemplating my own mortality.  I have thought of a few things that Steve-o might want to share after I commence to take the Dirt Nap at my funeral before he has me taxidermied and turned into a coffee table.

Don’t look at it as if I’m dead.  I’ve just been returned to the Master Craftsman for extensive cleaning and repair.

If you present my stiff carcass in an itchy pink nightie and bad makeup for viewing in an open casket so Mom’s friends can file by and exclaim, “She looks soooo gooood!”  I will haunt you forever.

Pop Tarts, Mountain Dew and Flamin’ Hot Cheetos do not comprise a balanced diet.

Techno music is appropriate for porn movie sound tracks.  If you want to listen to some good music, download the collection on my SD card in my phone to your computer.

More Central Ohio White Death, More Funky Victorian Pics, and Other Odds and Ends

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I’m still trying to figure out this Rube Goldberg device.

This contraption, which I think is some kind of spinal correction device (?) could also have afforded some tactical advantage when other kids are chasing you down to kick your ass.   I can see where it could be a sort of almost skateboard without the board.   I love Victorian ingenuity.  Strange thing is that even in the early 1980’s (and I’m not sure whether or not this is still being done in schools) all the girls had to get checked for scoliosis in 7th and 8th grade.

The scoliosis check was not what I’d call a good time.  All the 7th and 8th grade girls were herded into the gym, (wearing those hideous gym suits, or in my case, since I had a Doctor’s Note permanently freeing me from gym class, a t-shirt and shorts) lined up in alphabetical order, then we either had to unzip the gym suit or pull up our t-shirt and let (supposedly) a nurse trace our spines with her finger and verify that our spines were straight.

If you were found to have scoliosis (a couple of girls did have it) then you were sent to an orthopedist who would fit you with a full torso brace with metal stays and tie up straps that you had to wear 24/7 for two or three years unless you wanted to become a hideously deformed hunchback.

scoliosis brace

Imagine having to wear this continuously – all through high summer.  Oh, the stink!

I’m glad my spine stayed straight.

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This is one of the snow piles outside of Target.  It’s 5°.

But, as always, they set up the swimsuit racks the week after New Year’s!

The City of Columbus, I must say has been doing an abysmal job in clearing the snow.  ODOT got the freeways cleared right away, but the major through roads that are the city’s responsibility, by and large haven’t been touched.  I have to wonder what the hell they’re doing with all that income tax money, since the state and the surrounding localities are seeming to cope pretty well with snow removal.  I know that corruption and graft and union thuggery run amok in Mayor Coleman’s hizzy.  I’m surprised he didn’t ask for emergency money from his homeboy Obama to clear out Downtown.

It didn’t used to be that way, and it’s sad.   The illustrious Mayor-for-Life Coleman has ran the police department into the ground, presided over (and approved of) the corruption and vice and absolute lack of accountability in the schools, and now the city can’t seem to get the crews out to clear the freaking snow.  Coleman will keep on getting re-elected though, because a.) there’s no term limit, and b.) he kisses up to the gimme crowd.  While everyone (me included) who can moves to the freaking suburbs because of the uncontrolled druggies and rampant crime-but if you work in the city limits (I do) you still have to pay income tax so this gimme-appeaser and cronies can keep on subsidizing the gimme crowd.   The worst thing about living in the suburbs is that I can’t vote against this shyster when he runs for (and gets elected) mayor again.

So much for the Things-I-Can’t-Change.

I have been somewhat remiss as of late in not posting more of those postmortems that people just can’t help gawking at.  It’s bad that I am so bored that I’m trolling postmortems again, but it is February.  What else am I supposed to do?  February always makes me think about death.  Maybe it’s because I have to go to the BMV to get my car registration, and that’s always depressing.

dead sisters

The only way I’d ever been that close to either of my sisters, voluntarily, is if I’d been dead– which I think these two are.

Generally, if either of my sisters had been that close to me when I was a little kid, it was because they had me in a headlock, pounding me with whatever sort of pointy or heavy object that was handy.

I am surprised that I actually survived childhood with only minor scarring and disfigurement.  The psychological damage- well, the Prozac does help.

creepy old woman

Gam-Gam died in 1890, but those eyes are still watching you!

I know it’s morbid, but I think the postmortem pics are a forerunner of the Open Casket Funeral, which I find most distasteful in almost every instance.  I can’t get the images of my grandmothers in their coffins with badly done makeup, in those awful pink nighties out of my head, let alone the image of Aunt Ellen (the non-makeup wearing Pentecostal) slathered down with day-glo orange lipstick and all dolled up as if she were headed for the Oompa-Loompa Prom.

I told Steve-o to cremate me when I die, but knowing him (and I’ve said this before) he will have me taxidermied and made into a coffee table.

burning-bridge

“Looking beyond the embers of bridges glowing behind us
To a glimpse of how green it was on the other side
Steps taken forwards but sleepwalking back again
Dragged by the force of some inner tide”-  Pink Floyd, “High Hopes”

Perhaps it is true that one can never really go back home again, but in another sense it’s also true that one can never really leave.  It’s amazing how our society forgets the past so quickly, and repeats its mistakes so readily.  Memory, if anything, should serve as both a harbinger and a teacher.

I think we do ourselves a disservice when we neglect the study of history.  It may not be a good idea to continually live in the past, and I have to guard against this, but to deliberately seek a sort of live-in-the-now amnesia isn’t very healthy either.

I’ve learned to be careful which bridges to burn and which ones to leave standing, although I can’t say I’ve mastered the art of moving forward, or of knowing which pieces of the past are worth holding on to, and which pieces are things I need to let go.

hitler empty seat

I’ll have to remember to check the empty seats in my car for Hitler before I go.

nerve pills

I think I’d be hella nervous if I were approached by a giant talking frog. But I’m paranoid like that.

Dark and Pensive, Infomercial Madness, and Outside of the Sphere

sunset trees

Winter can be beautiful as well as dark and lonely.

I can’t say that I’m sad or even melancholy.  I’m more in a sort of dark and pensive mode, which for me is a familiar, almost comfortable place to be.  My deep preference for solitude and quiet might be hard to explain to those with an extraverted personality, but for me it’s the mental equivalent of a warm fire and a relaxing easy chair.  The gardens of memory, like real gardens this time of year, are subdued and don’t appear to be as active on the surface.  Dormant, maybe, but not dead.

Of course it’s not as easy to turn off the world as it probably should be.  I am better at it than most, but I still have to deal with the practicalities of living and communicating with other people.  It would be nice to be able to tell a few people to go hang (or to just plain get bent) but I can’t shut down completely.  I’m afraid if I do that I won’t be able (nor will I want) to turn back on.

paper nighties

For me, every day is an act of the will to choose to interact with the world beyond my very restrictive sphere.  I don’t want to most of the time.   Today I would much rather prefer to take a trip to the Main Library in downtown Columbus and peruse and read and think in the quiet.  Unfortunately I don’t see a day coming where I can do that, unless I stop off there for a bit on my way to the Paper Nightie Appointment tomorrow.  I scheduled tomorrow and Friday off (I will pay for that one, but I need a little time away and I have the vacation time) so tomorrow I don’t have to scramble about and then have to endure the Paper Nightie Appointment.  I dread it enough as it is.  Friday I hope to finish getting Steve-o whatever Christmas gifts I want to get him- or better yet, meet him somewhere so he can pick out what he wants.

angry birds pants

Dad’s getting Angry Birds jammies.

Most of my relatives have way too much crap to begin with, so I have to be creative.  Dad is quite enamored of the Angry Birds game, and he likes those men’s lounge pants that geezers wear around the house.  It should work.  What else can you buy for the man with the taxidermied squirrel on a skateboard?

squirrel skateboard

Yes, Dad really does have a taxidermied squirrel on a skateboard.

I learned a new word from the infomercials that pollute the airwaves from 2-4 AM.  Insomnia must have some advantages, if only to enlighten me to the wonderful world of such invaluable products such as the Pos-T-Vac, the Nu Wave, and the No-No.

I always thought that area that’s not your neck, not your tits and not your shoulders was simply the not-neck-not-tits-not-shoulders area.  Then I discovered the French actually have a word for the not-neck-not-tits-not-shoulders area.  It’s always good for me to expand my vocabulary.   They call it the décolletage or décolleté- meaning “sort of around the neck area,” and you’re supposed to slather expensive cream on it so it doesn’t end up looking all wrinkled and birdy.  One infomercial suggests you should blast this area with a radio frequency device you can also use on your face to ward away the birdy wrinkles.   ‘Kay….

All I could think of when I came upon this device was Oh. Holy. Shit.

face blaster

If I feel the need to hook my face up to this, I have deeper issues than a few birdy wrinkles.

I can just imagine if I’d found this when I was five years old and had to use the bathroom in the middle of the night at Grandma’s.  Seeing Grandma’s and Grandpa’s dentures sitting next to the sink, glaring out at me from their soaking cups of Polident as I was taking a midnight whiz was enough to give me nightmares for a month.  It was bad enough that Grandma could remove her teeth at night. I could just imagine the insane terror my five year old mind would have gone through if I thought Grandma took her face off at night.

At first glance I thought the above alien face mask was some kind of device intended to turn someone into Lieutenant Commander Data from Star Trek:

Data

You never know.

Of course women have been doing bizarre things to themselves to attempt to stem the inevitable tide of aging since the beginning of time. The truth is that entropy is always going to win.  Live long enough and your tits will bounce off your knees.

At least most women don’t still wear these awful things:

corset

I bet they itched, too.

I have discovered many interesting things online that I can’t imagine anyone would have any sort of real practical use for, but people will buy anything on Amazon. Even this: It’s a model to practice doing prostate exams.  And you can have it in time for Christmas if you order it by December 23!

prostate exam thing

I have an idea for a new party game based on this: “Pin the Prostate on Bob”?

Things to be Thankful For, Tempus Fugit, Taxidermy and Coffee Tables

murphy's

It has been a difficult past week for me.  I am thankful I don’t live in Boston.  I’ve been struggling with anxiety and panic attacks again and I’m sure that if we had random bombings going on in Columbus on top of the events (which were not related and had nothing to do with the Marathon bombing)  that got me back in the scared rabbit mode, that would send me bat shit crazy over the edge.

Of course, when the shit hits the fan it comes at one from all directions.  I really don’t feel like getting into the particular details, because I’m just now starting to settle back down enough to stop hyperventilating and for the PVCs to let up some.   For those who aren’t acquainted with medical lingo, PVC stands for premature ventricular contractions.  It means the bottom half of your heart goes off before it should.  It’s a sort of catch in my heart rhythm that I usually don’t notice, and is likely a (supposedly harmless) side-effect of rheumatic fever, but it’s aggravated by stress.  This week has been nothing but continual stress on a stick.

When the PVCs get going bad, the runaway train feeling and constant catching and pounding keeps me awake and I’ve actually gone to the hospital for it once (won’t do that again)  because they were happening so often I’d freak out and couldn’t catch my breath.

freaked

One thing I will say about that last hospital trip is that I’ll die first before I call the squad from home again.  They kept me overnight- next to a poor old woman with dementia who screamed like a howler monkey all night- and did the whole cardiac workup.  This was back in July.

Supposedly the whole PVC thing is perfectly “innocuous,” but this assessment came from the same hospital where I was mistaken for a 95 year old woman with a flaming case of Montezuma’s revenge.  I know for being 44 I’ve been rode hard and put away wet, but I don’t think I look 95 just yet.  I don’t know if I should trust them or not.  Eventually I will end up needing a pacemaker or other correction for the abnormal rhythm, according to the cardiologist who ran all the tests, but not quite yet.

That’s not terribly reassuring.  The question is how do you know when the rhythm gets so out of whack that it’s time for the pacemaker?  Do you have to fall over or pass out or almost die?

“Yeah, Mildred, just take some Imodium and your screaming shits should be gone in no time.”

“But I’m not Mildred, and I don’t have the shits.”

Hopefully if and when the Big One hits, I will be in close proximity to any other hospital but that one. Unfortunately it’s only a five mile trip down I-270 to that particular hospital from my house.  The better hospitals are on the other side of town.

Either that or the Lord will take me quickly so I’ll not have to endure the indignity.

fred sanford

To add insult to injury, a guy I used to work with died on Wednesday.  He was an Army vet and a very cool individual.  Unfortunately he had been severely ill for several years before he died.  Even worse his wife had him in an open casket (I loathe the whole open casket thing to begin with) and he looked really bad.  The calling hours were last night.  Even though I had a horrible week and just wanted to go home and go to bed, I thought it best to go and to pay respects and offer condolences to his wife- she is a lovely person, and I really felt for her after going through so many years of his illness.

I did offer some words of condolence to his wife, but I had to beat feet quickly.  Nobody likes funeral homes, and it really sucks when it’s someone who was cool and died too young from nasty diseases (emphysema and heart disease.)   But after being stressed out and freaked all week I couldn’t handle being in a funeral home for more than a few minutes.  The PVCs kicked in with a vengeance and I couldn’t catch my breath.  That was my cue to get in the car and take off.

grill coffin

You might as well do something funny if you are going to do those horrible open casket displays.

coffee table

Steve-o will probably have me taxidermied and installed in a glass topped coffee table.  He is a sick puppy- but creative!

One thing I will say about untimely death is that it is an ever present reminder : tempus fugit- time flies.  Even when it seems to be standing still.

Slowly I’m calming back down, and I am trying to look around and be thankful for the moment, and remember that life is short.